Review: The Jeera Packer

“What you don’t do never really leaves you. What you let go of never let’s go of you.”

  • The Jeera Packer

One reads books so that he can get lost in the world that someone else created with their imagination. When such a world takes you on a journey that you can never experience on your own, there are no words left express your thoughts.

I for one can never be a sharpshooter or get into politics. Clean or dirty politics, it doesn’t matter for I can never imagine being a part of the power game. So I picked up a book to take a look into that imaginary sphere.

Name: The Jeera Packer

Author: Prashant Yadav

Publisher: Fingerprint!

ISBN:978-81-7599-418-8

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Book Blurb:

“I once changed the history of Uttar Pradesh

with a gun and a finger.

One shot, one man.

Right man, wrong man.

But that was thirty years ago.

I shot people through their heads back then.

I pack jeera in the basement now.

THIS IS ME, AND HERE IS MY STORY.”

I liked the blurb so much that I couldn’t help but put it here for the readers to read. This is the reason I chose to read the book.

Description of The Jeera Packer:

This is the story of a sharpshooter turned shopkeeper, who is searching for the purpose of his life. The dark past is hidden away from the world, under a layer of jeera dust.

However, the beast inside is still restless. It has yet to quench its thirst. In a way that the art of killing is given its rightful tribute.

At the same time, the political scenario in UP is setting itself for the biggest election to be seen with wolves howling for power and foxes vying for a bit of flesh. There is only one who man deserves to be at the wrong end of the sniper – the Chief Minister.

Who is the victim in this game of ultimate power?  Who is the one holding the reins? Who shall emerge unscathed? Who shall end up losing everything?

The stakes are high and the anticipation brimming. Let the world fade away as you get lost reading!

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My Take on The Jeera Packer:

This is my first ever political-crime-thriller and I must say I did get a good book to start it off with.

When I started reading this I felt drawn to the characters. They were simple and easy to understand. The deeper I was drawn into a story, the more I understood their complexity. Each character is important to the plot and while the character undergoes change, the plot develops.

The author has started off with various characters within the shades of black and gray. It is truly beautiful how certain characters in the gray shade turn white while the characters in white shade turn dark. The writing is different as the narration is not from a single perspective. It shows how power impacts each individual from his seat of dominance.

Though there are few grammatical errors and certain characters seem fictitious, it can be overlooked because of the story as a whole compensates it.

The best part of the book is that it zooms in on certain rarely noticed objects and drives the reader’s attention to it while in the backdrop makes the reader think on the lines of the characters.

“Nobody dies of starvation in this world, unless you are a cotton farmer”

There are some statements that make you nod your head in acceptance while there are others that make you think “how true! how come I never noticed!”.

So overall the book was fantastic! I rate it 4 over 5 stars!

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Review: Ashvamedha!

 

Was it worth it? I don’t know. But I have realised that there is something attached to the power of politics that is addictive. Power to influence, power to make yourself heard, power to make you important;

  • Ashvamedha, The Game of Power

A story is interesting as long as the plot is strong and the characters are dynamic. One such book that held me captive is Ashvamedha!

Name: Ashvamedha, The Game of Power

Author: Aparna Sinha

Publisher: Srishti Publishers

ISBN: 978-93-82665-76-2

ashvamedha  Description of Ashvamedha:

Ashwin Jamwal, an ordinary man leading an ordinary life is chosen to be the most powerful man across the globe. His surroundings and the people arround him have been manipulated, threatened and even murdered to get him to the ultimate seat of power.

However the question remains: Why?

On the other hand there waits a man in the shadow of darkness, planning for years to be the most powerful man in the world. However, that can be achieved in only one way: to defeat the current most powerful person on the Earth.

Since power has been divided among people of various sectors, the only way to defeat the most powerful man to create him first. Hades is out there to do just that.

The story of power, politics, love and torture come together to make a gripping story that takes a reader to another level of mystery and crime. With a bated breath jump on this journey with Ashwin to reach the peak of power.

A fair warning: Power is addictive!

To check out the trailer:

 

My take on Ashvamedha, The Game of Power:

Every story has a protagonist and an antagonist. Never had I ever read about an antagonist create and help the protagonist to become powerful.

That is the sole reason I chose to read this book. The verdict: the read till the end was definitely worth the effort!

The story is well written and starts off with Ashwin put into a political drama. The death of a minister and his lover is a great way to bring the curiosity to edge.

Then the story takes us back to Ashiwn’s past and his journey to become the most powerful person in the world.

Here the story seems little unbelievable as most of us know that power is a very fickle thing. Extreme planning may not yield the expected results when power, money and cunning minds are involved. Blow the plot into a global scale and the plot seems rather unrealistic.

However, once the reader crosses the threshold of believing or not, the story is unparallel and reminds me of Sidney Sheldon’s “Tell Me Your Dreams”. I had loved that book as it had left me speechless and now Aparna Sinha’s “Ashvamedha” has left me in the same state.

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Maybe power is something that belongs to the mind. It is an illusion, a palace of glass that shatters the mind once the control slips. The story leads the reader to firmly believe in this aspect.

The best part however is the climax!

Never, ever had I guessed the direction it was heading in and it left me both speechless and shocked.

It was like “all along I saw the signs that lead me to the destination. I ignored it. Then when the destination was just beyond the range of visibility, it slapped me hard in the face while pouring ice-cold water on my head!”

Perfect ending!

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The story may have its share of loop holes and the hero worship involved, however, it makes up with the dramatic style of writing and the suspense it keeps on building with each page.

The other thing that made me love the story was the unique way of character development. The introduction of character was delayed leading the reader further into the author’s trap of suspense.

Together the story was something I really enjoyed reading and I am awfully sorry for the delayed review. I apologize for the radio silence in the matter of books!

My end of semester exams are going on and will last till 7th of January.

If this book had the capacity to make me quit studying for exam, imagine power it wielded over me!!

The plot is 100 times better than all of my text books put together! So I rate it a 4/5 stars!

Lots of love to the author for sending me the book and being ultra patient with me! Also a huge shout out to Tushti Bhatia for the amazing book!

 

Review: Skyfire !!

A book containing a mystery, a bone chilling story, a suspense to be held and the solution to break free. Maybe that is how “amazing-time” is gift wrapped!

Book Name: Skyfire (Click on the name to see for yourself)

Author: Aroon Raman

Publisher: Pan Macmillan India

ISBN: 978-93-82616-61-0

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Description of Skyfire:

Set in  the year of 2012, the year which had made people wait with bated breaths to hear about the end of the world, India is being hit by freak accidents. “Freak” is not exactly the right word when you consider storms blasting into the cities in a gap of 5 minutes, weird lightning lingering longer than it should, messing with the electrical signals and communication systems around the affected area.

The crushing blow to the country comes in the form of epidemics that nobody had ever heard of. Meanwhile, in the background, street children start vanishing from their homes. With nobody to look for them, they are lost to the world.

Only one child starts a journey to find the truth which leads journalist Chandrasekhar, historian Meenakshi Pirzada and Officer Syed Ali Hassan to hunt for the boy, unraveling the greatest crime of all time.

A plan started out from the tables of high society of India leading the protagonist to a scary climax in Bhutan turns the blood to ice with its mysterious depths and crazy motivation. What does it take for one man to bring a nation to its knees?

Find out in Skyfire!

If you want, take a look at the amazing trailer here:

My take with Skyfire:

Let me just say this: Skyfire can make you forget to breathe. Be warned. Read at the comfort of your home. Also if it is raining then it is an added bonus!

More on the plot:

I haven’t read the Shadow Throne and directly jumped into Skyfire. It is a feel good factor that I could still grasp the story with the hints and clues left by the author regarding the first book.

The story takes on an exponential growth towards catastrophe from the initial pages itself, leaving no doubts regarding what is to be expected as the characters develop and the plot deepens. The tension in the pages is very visible and one might feel the walls closing in around as one dives deeper.

I personally loved the simple way the story is put across without any technical jargon. The plot is somewhat expected if you have watched a lot of Bollywood movies as it is easy to recognize that the moment you see too rich, too good person then either he is the hero or the villain.

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There are some plot holes if one takes a closer look however it is not such a great sin to make some. It rather lets you think on how certain things could be changed to be made better.

The best part of the book is :

Its contrast between the simplicity of the language and the complexity of cross-border weather terrorism. I loved it completely.

The not-so-good part:

The story involves too much cruelty. Some of the things that the street children go through in this book made me nauseous. So there goes the warning: FOR BRAVE HEARTS ONLY!

Overall the book was an amazing read for a rainy day. Loved the way it broke the barriers in bringing suspense, crime, and mystery to a whole new level. As for a star rating,

4/5!!!

 

Review: Destiny of Shattered Dreams

One reason to read this book:

“Truth has many versions for it, your version may be different from my version”

  • Atul Malhotra (Destiny of Shattered Dreams)

What’s so special about this statement?

Read it from the perspective of a criminal who murdered someone, laundered money and shattered the dreams of many people.

The moment you read the word “criminal” I’m sure this statement brought disgust to you. Or made you think. For me, it did both.

So without further ado, here comes: Destiny of Shattered dreams.

Name: Destiny of Shattered Dreams (Click on the link to buy)

Author: Nilesh Rathod

Publication: Rupa Publications

ISBN: 978-81-291-3975-7

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So here is how the story goes:

Atul Malhotra is a hot-shot entrepreneur whose company TTL is flying high with success. Soon obstacles start springing up and Atul starts to choose between lesser evils. The life takes quick turns and he takes the road of the devil.

The turn shifts, game changes, people leave, the story turns into nightmare, wrongs are the right thing to do and thus TTL rises on the foundation of blood.

Fate can protect him for only so long as he is controlling the game.

The CBI gets a sniff of Atul’s work and soon get latch onto him. There begins the downfall of an empire. All the hard work and good intention go unheard in the noise of the wrong.

Here is the story of Atul Malhotra. Here is the story of every person bending before of the evil. Here is the story that teaches everyone a lesson.

If you want to take a glimpse into Atul’s world, here it is:

My take on Destiny of Shattered Dreams:

shattered-dreams-compressor The story initially gave a good suspense start with the right amount of “What will happen next?”

Slowly it became an industry jargon of sorts with a manual for how to run a company.

Just when I taught the book was becoming boring, I realize the author meant the reader to feel that way, because the best part was yet to come. He wanted the reader to fall into the trap of feeling monotonous so that when Atul takes few decisions, the reader should keep up with the count of right and wrongs.

So here are few reasons to read this book:

  • Amazing story
  • Manual to run a company
  • Learn about decisions, the right ones and the wrong ones.

 

The one thing that I felt was perfect in the book was:

To build a company it doesn’t take a lot, however in that lot, there is one key factor, taking the right path for right intentions.

Take one of them out of the equation and the whole thing falls apart.

The other thing that made me love the book is:

The ending.

I couldn’t think of any better way to conclude. I loved it so much that I must have read it around five times. 100% perfect ending.

So with all that I rate the book  4/5 stars! I thank Author Nilesh Rathod for giving me this book in exchange for an honest review and thank Goodreads for the giveaway!

 

Review: The Seventh Cup

It’s very rare a book can confuse me, in a good sense, and makes me think about the plot. It’s even rarer when the book has a story that shocks me and makes me say “Oh My God!”

Finally, the rarest thing that can happen to me is having nothing to say about a book other than “AMAZING!!!”

Without further ado, here is the book that has stopped me from speaking too much.

Name: The Seventh Cup (To buy The Seventh Cup, click on the name)

Author:  Nitesh Kumar Jain

Publishers: Cyberwit.net

Description of THE SEVENTH CUP:

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The story will not find justice if I try to provide a description. I have a feeling I would spoil the suspense of it. I will still try to do my best without giving away any spoilers.

This a love story, a crime story, a suspense story, a mystery story and a story that you wouldn’t expect. It starts off slowly with a love story. Then comes the history and archaeology lessons. Slowly there is a glimpse into story inside a story and a play inside a story. I’m not making sense.

So let me go again.

The story revolves around a Swiss girl gone missing. One detective, one exchange student, one maniac.

They all come together to search the girl with all their heart.

The first person, aka, detective Susanne,  tries to search for the missing girl based on the past and the words of the maniac.

The second person, aka, Riya, searches her dear and close friend based on the instinct and the Universal law of Attraction. It’s her faith and friendship that brings her all the way from Goa to Swiss in search of her friend.

The third person, aka, the maniac, Avinash is the guy madly in love with the missing girl, Verona. Their story starts in Goa but later the story takes a flight and reaches Zurich.

Entry another suspect. The missing girl’s boyfriend. Kevin 1. (What’s with the weird name? Find out in the book)

What happened to Verona? Which is the story that leads to the truth? Where is Verona?

My review of THE SEVENTH CUP:

This story is so intricately woven that even a single description can reveal everything or make it into a confusing knot. There is a fine balance between the characters which are so complexly developed. What made the story really amazing for me was its plot development.coffee.jpg

It seems like the story talks about mundane stuff. In the end, when everything is unwrapping that’s when I felt like throwing buckets of water over my head for not realizing the truth and where the story was heading. Not a single guess can help you in stating “I know where it goes”.

Though there was a point where I felt it was a tad bit boring. The part where the story starts repeating and retracing. You can understand this only if you read the book. What a state! I am robbed out of words!

Altogether, this is a story which is very similar in the lines of Gone Girl. An exception is that the lead is not a crazy woman. Also one more thing. The story makes use of science, religion and a close concept of energy and matter. If you don’t find the relevance of this at the beginning, keep patience. You will eventually find all the answers.

Overall the book was an amazing read and I rate it 4.5/5 cups of coffee with lots of milk and sugar! I thank the Author and Anuj Kumar for providing this book in exchange for an honest review. I seriously loved it and hope everyone reads this soon! (I wouldn’t mind if it was made into a movie either!)

Review: Let The Game Begin!

History is one subject that has the power of sweeping us into its pages before we can understand what is happening. What about mythology? What happens when the history of chess meets the mythology behind it?

Name: LET THE GAME BEGIN! (Click on the name to be redirected to the Amazon page).

Author:  Sandeep Sharma

Publishers: Inspire India Publishers

ISBN: 978-9385783463

Take a look at the trailer here:

Description of Let the Game Begin!:

The story began 4000 years ago when two kingdoms, Chaturanga and Sarprakt, separated by a mystic mountain range are at war. Chaturang eventually wins in the war.

Unfortunately….. let the game begin

It loses the only heir, killing the kingdom from within itself. That story ends right there. At least that’s what the history suggests.

The unknown fact is that a mysterious man from the mountain descended to help the king of Chaturanga to recreate the battle that took his son away. There a bitter truth is revealed….

Present day:

People are falling dead like leaves from a tree in autumn. The only clue regarding the killer- the intricately carved chess pawns and a message that says “Let The Game Begin!”.

The police are baffled and they will have to go back through the history and mythology to the very origins of Chess to find the truth about the Chess Killer. This was never meant to be a game, it was war!

My review of Let The Game Begin:

The story, in the beginning, feels like it was written by Ashwin Sanghi. Why did I do such a comparison? Because his book The Krishna Key was my benchmark for a mythological thriller in India. Until Let The Game Begin. It is wrong to compare both as both are very different and each one of them is unique in their own aspect.

Coming back to Let The Game Begin, I had a great time reading this book. Writing a mystery is hard, but a mystery with a mythological background is harder. So from my point of view, this is how the story proceeds:

  • Random killings where the victim is found with a parcel containing a chess piece and a message is found. The message stating “Let The game begin!”.
  • Every clue leads to a dead-end in the first inspection due to police searching only the  motive.
  • A historian named Dinesh Gandhi is brought in to assist in decoding the mysterious message left by the killer.
  • This historian helps find clues towards the mysterious killer.

This is the basic layout but not the whole story. This is where things turn crazy and the mystery comes close to the people in search of truth. The truth buried by historians comes out in bits and pieces. The truth regarding the game called CHESS is waiting to come out.

Will the killer be successful? How many people should die before the killer is satisfied? Will the police capture the killer? chess.jpg

To find the answers, order your book today! Okay Okay, I’m sorry. I understand how it feels to take a peek and end with that statement but I’m honest when I say read that book. It was really good. There were a few situations where I was very confused, but in the end, it doesn’t matter.

So considering all of this I rate this book 3.75/5! A total entertainer but one thing that made me sad, the story doesn’t end here. Have to wait for the next book….

Waiting until then……

Secretly Yours

“What’s so beautiful about it?” I asked. “It’s an everyday sight”.

She continued gazing at the sky in admiration. Then she turned to me. “Isn’t it odd?” she said. “Just because it’s an everyday sight we don’t appreciate it.”

“So?”

“Imagine if a blind person could see just for a couple of minutes. How would he feel about this sight?”

  • Secretly Yours

Have you read or watched twilight? Well, how about an Indian version of the story? Wait till you hear out the details of the book, don’t jump to conclusion of sparkly vampires, they don’t make an appearance.

Name: Secretly Yours  (Click on the link to be directed to Amazon page)

Author:  Vikrant Khanna 

Publishers: Penguin

ISBN: 9780143425915

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Description:

Sahil is a young boy of seventeen who thinks that life has been unfair to him taking away his parents at his birth, leaving him to blame for their deaths and in the care of grandmother. He finds life a purgatory and existence mundane. He thinks that death can give solace that life cannot give.

Until…….

A day comes when he meets the most beautiful girl of his life, Anya.

Coincidentally, Shilma also witnesses  a serial killer, murdering men brutally and castrating their corpses.

Life goes on beautifully for Sahil, but little did he know her secrets. She tries to change his mind about life in general and how to treasure it. On the way Sahil falls deeply in love with Anya, but circumstances lead him into a terrible accident.

This accident gives him one super power, the power to be able to read minds. Now he has another way to pry into Anya’s secrets and find out the truth about her existence.

My take:

I know, I made a reference to twilight, but no, Anya is not a vampire.

Then why relate to it? I’ll go in detail about the book and why I make stupid comments at times.

  • The story starts with death, which is the new “start here” point for the living. (Sarcasm included).
  • Protagonist is a typical bad boy who drinks (at the age of seventeen, I think there was a drinking age in my country. Times do change pretty quickly!), smokes and has all the evils. He is the kind of person you end up detesting and is obsessed with death. (you can hate him now).
  • A super achieving brother and a cousin amazing sister, mirroring the incapability of the protagonist to be anything better in life.
  • Protagonist is guitarist and a writer, Hmmm where have I heard this before? Wait Bollywood!
  • Protagonist is blamed for everything bad happening in every otherthaa character’s life cliché.
  • Love story enters!! **Claps**
  • Hero’s love interest has too many secrets and disappears at critical moments. The reader can guess the story next with support provided by news reports that states that there had been brutal murders in Shimla.

Then the story takes supernatural turns and somewhere the story is both absurd and interesting in a way. It’s like one wants to see where the story will go next. Also the story recounts the individual stories of all the characters, bringing in a lot of depth to the story and the plot. This is one reason where the reader can just fall into the story.

The story makes the reader think on life and death, it’s consequences and the perspectives of those left behind. It shows the regrets that a person may have if he has degraded the luxuries of life and has committed heinous crimes. This story gives a really good moral and I think all sins can be forgiven for that account alone. The story has the perfect ending that it can possibly ask for. So not a total waste, though read the book when you have some spare time. It is definitely better than Twilight and has the Indian touch to it.

Thus considering everything I rate this book a 3.5/5!